Paperwork signed on hockey team

LOVELAND — It’s official. A Central Hockey League team has been signed to play at the new Budweiser Events Center at the new Larimer County Fairgrounds and Events complex.

Details of the signing were released today at a press conference held at the Larimer County Courthouse.

The unnamed team will hit the ice in October 2003. A name-the-team contest will begin the first week of September and results will be announced later in the fall. Team ownership trademarked two potential names but they allowed the trademarks to expire.

“We really want to see what the community will come up with,´ said Bill Stewart, a member of Larimer County Sports LLC — ownership group of the team.

Six-time Stanley Cup champion Ralph Backstrom, a college hockey star at Denver University, is the other partner in Larimer County Sports LLC.

“We want to get involved in the community,” Backstrom said.

The style of hockey will be similar to the National Hockey League, with the red-line rule in effect.

“We won’t be playing dump-and-chase hockey. You will be seeing a lot of puck control and skating. Occasionally you will see some Western Canadian Cowboys on the ice,” Backstrom said.

Some Facts about the Central Hockey League:

  • The average age of a Central Hockey League player is 25.
  • The majority of players come from Canada or the United States. There are also several European players.
  • Players who enjoy success in the Central Hockey League advance to the American Hockey League and from there, potentially, move up to the NHL.
  • The average price for a ticket will be $8 to $18.